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Miami alumnus Bill Beagle to vie for District 8 Congressional seat

By Abby Kelly, Senior Staff Writer

Beagle declared his candidacy after John Boehner's resignation

Miami alumnus and Ohio state Sen. Bill Beagle ('87) recently announced his bid to replace Republican Speaker of the House John Boehner in the United States Congress.

Boehner announced Sept. 25 he is resigning from his seat in Congress, effective Oct. 30.

"Today, my heart is full with gratitude for my family, my colleagues and the people of Ohio's 8th District," Boehner said in this statement. "God bless this great country that has given me - the son of a bar owner from Cincinnati - the chance to serve."

Although it will be too late for the upcoming election on Nov. 3, Governor John Kasich will select dates for special primary and general elections to determine who will serve the remainder of Boehner's term through 2016.

The district that Boehner represents, the 8th Congressional District of Ohio, encompasses Butler County and Oxford.

Beagle joins the race alongside other Republican candidates, including Butler County Auditor Roger Reynolds and Troy teacher J.D. Winteregg, who ran against Boehner in the 2014 primary.

"The citizens of the district deserve to be represented by a conservative they can trust and who has the know how to hit the ground running," Beagle said in his candidacy announcement on Sept. 29.

Political science professor Bryan Marshall thinks Beagle's bid for the position is a great opportunity for Miami students to see where their degrees can take them.

"It is exciting, especially for our students, because then our students can kind of see, 'here is one of our own people, they were a student here and look where they are now,'" Marshall said.

The state senator graduated from Miami with a degree in finance and earned an MBA from Cleveland State University in 1990. After years in the business world, he ran for public office in 2011 and was elected to represent the 5th District in the Ohio state senate.

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"I think we can all agree that Washington is broken," Beagle said. "I would like to see if we can take these lessons and hard work and common sense to govern [Ohio] and take that to Washington and see if we can't do some good there."

Beagle feels the balance between his business and legislative experience give him an advantage in Washington.

"I think it is good to have people with business experience and people who own business in Washington," he said. "I have also had bills passed, I have had a lot of experience in just four-and-a-half years just addressing some of the same issues that Washington has. We talk about unemployment, education, energy and other issues."

Beagle's daughter, Morgan,is a senior at Miami. She was at first surprised about his decision to run for Congress, but shortly realized it was something she should have expected.

"My dad has always been a servant leader - someone who has strived to make a difference in the lives of people both within our community and then throughout the state of Ohio," she said. "I am extremely excited and proud that he has the opportunity and, more importantly, the willingness to run for Congress."

Morgan has also said that her friends who started following her dad's re-election campaign for the state senate are even more excited that he is running for Congress.

"Some kids are more politically interested and active than others, so we entertain questions [in hopes] that some of them can come and work on my campaign," the senator added.

Marshall added that students should take advantage of the opportunity of the alumnus' candidacy.

"Having those kinds of connections with our alum in politics really helps our students because they are all going to have an opportunity to at least interact hopefully with those people and to have the benefit of their experience," he said. "Those are kind of benefits that are really invaluable."